Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Pham Dung, who is also head of the Government Committee for Religious Affairs, has led a Vietnamese delegation to Mexico to share experience in the field.

During the visit, which fell on June 15 to 19, to strengthen friendship and multi-faceted cooperation between the two countries, the Vietnamese officials worked with Secretary-General of the Mexican Episcopal Conference Eugenio Lira Rugarcia and Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Mercedes Del Carmen Guillen Vicente.

The host highly valued the progressive points in the religious policy of the Vietnamese Party and State, describing them as useful experience for Catholic nations like Mexico. They pledged to increase delegation exchanges to improve the efficiency of religious work in the respective countries.

Mercedes Del Carmen Guillen Vicente, who is also responsible for Mexican population, migration and religious affairs, showed her special interest in the Vietnamese people and culture.

Vietnam is home to many religions and beliefs whose followers are working with a strong patriotic spirit.

By 2010, the country had 32 religious organisations whose operations were licensed by the State, with about 15.5 million followers, accounting for 18 percent of the total population. However, the number of unofficial followers is much higher, not to mention those who practise folk beliefs.

The main religions in Vietnam include Buddhism, with 6.8 million followers, Catholicism (5.7 million), Hoa Hao (1.4 million), Cao Dai (808,000), Protestantism (734,000), Islam (73,000), and Brahmanism (56,000).

Some statistics show that up to 98 percent of Vietnamese families practise some kind of worship at home.-VNA